The idea of having a Traction Avant myself had been lingering for many years. The opportunity came in the late '90s after I had dropped some of my time-consuming volunteer work. With access to the the Internet in its early stages (when browsing was still associated with high phone bills) I discovered that some owners had started to share knowledge and ideas about the Traction Avant. A co-incidental contact with Jeroen Cats -who was so tragically killed in an automobile accident some years later- about one of my father's Traction Avants of the mid '50s made me decide that the right time had come.

On hindsight I should have started with a straight-forward not too fancy 11BL and gain some experience with the Traction, but I had always been very much attracted to the 15-Six of which I had such vivid memories from my childhood. Budget was definitely a constraint and 15-Sixes were considerably more expensive to acquire, to restore and to maintain. I looked around and went to see a number of cars -the first of which I should have bought straight away on hindsight- and by the end of 1998 finally bought what was said to be "a reasonable proposition": a black 1952 boot-lid model. Being novice to the scene I really had no idea what "in reasonable condition" was supposed to mean. In this case it meant a car of which the body looked allright but virtually all mechanical parts were in bad need of an overhaul. Besides -another learning point- the car was incomplete which meant having to find out what belonged on a 15-Six, only to discover that there were numerous small differences between the model years. Olivier de Serre's "Holy Bible" on the Traction Avant was read and re-read numerous times and the fact that I needed to find all sorts of missing parts really made me dig in to the matter.

At the moment I have no less than three 15-Sixes, two of which are in running condition. The middle one on the pictures below -although not running- has been instrumental to complete an unfinished restoration project which I acquired late 2005.

 Please click on the images below for more details.

15-Six (1952) 15-Hydraulique (1954) rit15h 20814